Is Your Thyroid Healthy? 5 Signs of an Underactive Thyroid

Body Ecology

Posted August 16, 2011.

Do you know the telltale signs of hypothyroidism?

The thyroid gland is a small butterfly shaped gland that sits just below the thyroid cartilage. The thyroid can:

It can also tell the body to slow down. Sometimes the thyroid slows down so much that it becomes underactive. When this happens, the thyroid gland does not do its job, and the whole body suffers. This is what is known as hypothyroidism. As common as hypothyroidism is, the detection and treatment of it are getting a second look by doctors.

What does an underactive thyroid look like?

Below are 5 straightforward signs from your body, telling you to look closer at your thyroid. The endocrine system is a system of glands that release hormones into the bloodstream.  Consider your thyroid if you experience:

  1. Edema, or swelling in the legs, arms, or face.
  2. Abdominal weight gain.
  3. Cold hands and feet. Also, check if the nail beds are overgrown with fungus.
  4. Increased susceptibility to the common cold and flu. Or, a respiratory infection that hangs around for months.
  5. Dryness, which shows up in loss of hair, brittle nails, constipation, and achy joints.

Testing for Hypothyroidism Can Be Tricky

A major issue has erupted in the medical community. Many doctors are now disagreeing over what tests should be done to check thyroid function. Traditionally, TSH, Thyroid-Stimulating Hormone that is released from the pituitary gland in the brain, would be checked along with the two thyroid hormones it produces, T3 and T4.

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Author: Leslie Carol Botha

Author, publisher, radio talk show host and internationally recognized expert on women's hormone cycles. Social/political activist on Gardasil the HPV vaccine for adolescent girls. Co-author of "Understanding Your Mood, Mind and Hormone Cycle." Honorary advisory board member for the Foundation for the Study of Cycles and member of the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research.